"There are no mistakes or failures, only lessons."
Sometimes in life, we have to learn things the hard way. Over six months ago now, I had an awful experience with my own dogs and I now feel ready to speak about this in an attempt to save other people and their dogs from finding themselves in the same situation.
I wanted to increase Cody's fitness level, so along with Dave, took Cody and Dobby to a 'dog swimming pool'. It's amazing how much trust we put in people we believe to be professionals in their chosen field. In defence of the pool both dogs had previously swam at this pool with no problems.
After a short swimming session the dogs left the pool and were immediately sick. Twenty minutes latter and arriving home Cody left the van and collapsed. Ditto who had only been running around the edge of the pool started to vomit. We rushed the dogs to the vets. Worried vets treated all three dogs as an emergency. 48 hours later and all three dogs were still on a drip.
Meanwhile, we found ourselves at a dead-end with a pool unwilling to communicate with either ourselves or our concerned vets.
So we found ourselves asking why has this happened? And along came K9 Hydro Services run by Barbara Houlding and Maria Johnston. They kindly invited me to their very professional centre. On entering the building immediate differences were noted between K9 Hydro and the dog pool I was used to: it was so quite and calm, the pool was small, there were no toys and highly qualified staff were more than happy to help and greet my dogs.
Below are some of my finding following my visit to K9 Hydro as to what may have caused the problems:
· At no point should a dog take a toy from or below the water level.
· Emphasis should be on controlled water based physio treatments instead of random swimming.
· Dogs should be calm and focused throughout the session rather than crazy or over excited.
· Dogs should safely be assisted in and out of the pool, no jumping in.
· Sessions with one dog to one therapist are essential for safe practice
· Multi dog swimming is not therapy.
· Qualified Therapists should have hands on contact with their canine patient at all times both in and out of the pool or treadmill and wet room.
· Centres should have good water management and ventilation.
I urge you to research this topic, think wisely before selected a hydrotherapy pool and visit K9 Hydro or go to their website for more information www.k9hydroservices.co.uk
Above is a picture of little Frisbee the foster I had over DINAS and KC Festival in her new home. She is so tiny!